Australia taking advantage of the Asian century would perhaps be one of the best political and economic moves for the nation. As is evident, Australia is involving itself as a nation more and more with Asia culturally and economically. This move, will indefinitely have a positive impact on the nation. Changing the nations cultural identity for the sake of taking advantage of the Asian century is a vital path for the successfulness of Australia’s economic progress. One of the best paths to continuous change in cultural identity in Australia is through education, also referred to as “Asia literacy” which can be summed up as the study of skills, histories, cultures and geographies of the asia region (Leong 2017). How Australia and why it should continue to change its cultural identity will be explained further in the following paragraphs.
It is clear that Asia has an enormous influence on the world and especially on Australia. Asia is home to two – thirds of the worlds people and with time it will soon enough become the largest producer and consumer in the world (Australian curriculum) Australia is currently tied to Asia mostly through trade as almost 71% of Australia’s exports are from Asia (Australian curriculum) this is clear evidence and reason as to why Australia needs to continue to change and alter its cultural identity to take better advantage of the Asian century as the economic gain for Australia through its engagement with Asia is undeniable (Australian curriculum) Asia has already changed and benefited the Australian economy which is why we should see our regional location and the Asian century as an opportunity and grasp every benefit of it. The global Centre of the world is steering to our region, according to Henry (2012) “the tyranny of distance is being replaced by the prospects of proximity”, therefore it is clear that Australia, the lucky country, is located in the right place at the right time, in the Asian region in the Asian century, so why not take advantage and thrive for a stronger nation. (Henry 2012)
In order to strengthen its relationship with Asia, Australia must change its cultural identity even further than what is currently taking place in the nation. Continuous and permanent change to Australia’s cultural identity can occur through various aspects of society. One aspect in particular, and as I believe the most important is through education. One of the most important and even a key requirement to further this relationship would be Asian literacy being taught to the youth (Australian curriculum) the Asian literacy will bring forward Australia with a strong stance to the Asian region, allowing Australians to take advantage of the social and economic opportunities of the region (ABC 2012) giving the people of Australia an extensive insight into the history of the Asian region as well as their shared history with Australia will not only expand their cultural understanding of Asian societies, cultures and beliefs but it will also higher the chance of successful participation in the “Asian century”. (Australian curriculum) with Australia’s changed cultural identity not only will we benefit internally but also globally and create a larger creative capital by taking advantage of the Asian century(Australian curriculum)
the importance of Australia maintaining a strong relationship with Asia cannot be emphasized enough. Australia’s future is permanently tied to Asia, due to its geographical location (Henry 2012). Creating links with Asia are more cultural than they are economic or political (Henry 2012) creating a stronger relationship with the Asian region is the Australian governments leading role, however, educational and cultural institutions also play and important role (Henry 2012). Australia has to go further than engage with Asia economically, the way Asia is spoken about in Australia must be redefined (Leong 2017). The term Asia literacy itself should be seen more than just a way to connect but as a branch of Australia’s economic policies (Leong 2017).These stronger relationships with the region will create deeper knowledge for Australians which will then enable us to access to benefits of growth in the region (Henry 2012). Being part of the Asian century is surely a path to future prosperity for the nation and it very important not to be left behind in the Asian century (Johnson 2010)
Therefore, we can come to clear conclusion that Australia should and must continue to change its cultural identity to better take advantage of the Asian century. Taking advantage of the Asian century will no doubt have great benefits for Australia economically as Australia’s future success and even security is inevitably linked to what happens in the Asia region (Australian government 2012). due to Asia’s economic growth the security environment in the region is shifting and Australia must take advantage of this. As a nation we must broaden our knowledge of Asian cultures and languages to in turn become more Asian literate, these skills are essential to build stronger relationships across the Asian region (Henry 2012), with the educating of youth they will understand Asian societies and culture and therefore have the skills and knowledge to communicate with the people of Asia so they can live, work and learn in the region (Australian curriculum). we must do all this and take advantage of the Asian century due to our global location, Australia is greatly involved in the Asian market. As Australia’s future is permanently tied to the stability of its region it is vital and essential for us to grasp and take advantage of what is around us, Australia must continue to support a greater role for Asian countries (Henry 2012). although this success in taking advantage of the Asian century means that the whole nation my play its part it must be done so that we can contribute, learn from and take full advantage of the Asian century (Henry 2012). And since geographic closeness does not guarantee a nations relationship with the other, it is important for Australia to become Asia literate to successfully engage with Asia (ABC 2012). as the world we are living in now is no doubt the Asian century and Asia is bringing change to the world, we must take this opportunity to grow and rise with Asia, if not done now Australia will most certainly fall behind economically